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Philips 37PF9631D/37 available this week

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
Philips 37PF9631D/37 (Philips support site)

This TV is set to be released nationwide this week. My local BestBuy is showing 190 in the warehouse right now, with an instore arrival of June 18.

Note that the photos available from CES show a pedestal model. This, it turns out, is the 39PF9631D/10, not 37, which will be available mostly in Eastern Europe, Asia, and Africa.

MSPR is $2299; Best Buy's launch price is lower (pm for specifics).

My local BestBuy already has the 32" model 32PF7421D/37 on display. Based on the performance of that TV as compared to the Samsung LN-S3251D and LN-S3292D, the Sharp LC-32D40U, and the Sony KDL-32S2000, I expect that the 37" model will be a strong contender and could create some serious price pressure on Sammy, Sony, and Sharp. The 32" model was really very, very nice. Better blacks and better black detail than any of the other models (but note, I only tweaked each of the models a little bit, and not as fully as I would with a model at home). If the picture quality of the 37" model is comparable, then this could be a real contender in the 37-40" segment. The 32" model was pretty impressive.

(I will also note that I'm impressed with the availability--no retailer that I have been able to locate in Northern Virginia--including BestBuy, Tweeter, Circiut City, and Sears--has yet had stock of the new 37" Sharp, with the single exception of Myer-Emco, which is a local chain--and even they only have it in a few outlets).

[/$0.02]
post #2 of 34
I drove 40 miles to check this tv out at Best Buy and of course they didn't even have it on display damn it, the guy couldn't even find it in the computer. The 32" black one did look pretty good but I want to see this one and the Costco 42" black one. The price for this one and the Costco one is fair I think. Has anyone seen this TV? ANY comments on the picture quality and such?
post #3 of 34
Thread Starter 
Going to see it tonight. Remember that the Costco 42" model is a 2005, not a 2006 like the 37PF9631D.
post #4 of 34
True, and the size may be worse for high-def. I think 37" is the key for me. 42" for my room is probably too big, I'd rather have a better picture and a newer model and this size and style, just worried about the picture, so many people in this forum seem to find fault with most tvs here and it makes it difficult to make a good purchase. Yeah, most of what they say is helpful and true but it is still difficult to actually lay down all this money on something that may not be what it seems. All these little problems with sets have kept me from getting another hdtv, because my first hdtv had a bunch of problems. Do you think Philips is a good choice? I'm sick of following Sonys and don't want a Samsung at all and the Sharp's at least in the bad store set-ups just don't look that great even though they might be. Also except for the sharp tv none make a 37". Let me know, good or bad how this set was. Thanks, Andre
post #5 of 34
saw this and the 32" today. both are top notch. no remotes lying around so I had to use the volume/menu/channel buttons. i'll take this over the samsung now.
post #6 of 34
that the 42" that Costco will be selling in July is an older model. The appearance of the 42" is identical to these described 32" and 37" and until just recently, there were no images/spec sheets for the 42". Now that one has appeared on the Philips site, it shows an issue date of May 2006. Just asking.
post #7 of 34
Don't know if it is an old model, but the 37" has amibilight 2 and pixel plus 2HD and the 42" doesn't. Don't know if that really matters though, but maybe a little.
post #8 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by HRockwell
that the 42" that Costco will be selling in July is an older model. The appearance of the 42" is identical to these described 32" and 37" and until just recently, there were no images/spec sheets for the 42". Now that one has appeared on the Philips site, it shows an issue date of May 2006. Just asking.
I think you're right. Don't know why I thought it was an '05. I was digging through the Philips Product Selector last week...must have got myself confused. However, the date I find is June 13, 2006.

The spec sheet is attached. This is definitely the TV that CostCo has. It has Pixel Plus (1), no Ambilight, and 1650:1 CR. In other words, its the 2005 panel and electronics with a 2006 bezel and jack-pack (1 HDMI).

Philips advertised CR for the 37PF9631D is 6000:1. Don't know if they are measuring differently this year or what.

Either way, for the same money, you can either have 5", or better tech. Keeping in mind that the 42" model is about 50" wide

 

42pf7421d_37_pss_aen.pdf 371.1484375k . file
post #9 of 34
I have been eyeing the 42 for weeks. As soon as I see it in a store, I'm buying it. I will post a review.

EDIT probably "ordering it"
post #10 of 34
Thread Starter 
So, I've got the 37PF9631D at home right now for an in-home demo. The picture is truly excellent. It can acheive blacks that are as dark as the bezel, and yet show detail. The static contrast is excellent. I've noticed some slight shimmer on 1080i sources, but only on flat, non-uniform color surfaces (for instance, the pink lighting effects on the set behind Jay Leno's head). I've noticed nothing like this on 720p sources.

DVDs are excellent.

Colors are very vibrant, and there is a wonderful (often overlooked by manufacturers) tint control module.

Picture-wise, this is one of the best LCD's I've seen. And I've seen a lot. The Ambilight 2-channel is an awesome feature and really makes movies immersive. I really, really like Ambilight.

However, it is not without its foibles. It doesn't have input independent memory, so when toggling between, say, the tuner and component DVD, the settings stay the same. And it doesn't remember your "personal settings" for some reason. If I set up the personal setting, change to a preset setting, and then turn the TV off, my personal settings are gone and replaced with the current values from the preset. Not fun. Also, there is no simple way of switching between presets--unlike Samsung and Sharp, which have convenient buttons on the remote to toggle settings modes, on the Philips you have to enter the menu, scroll right several times, and then select your preset (remembering to always switch back to Personal before shutting it off!). Very cumbersome.

PC compatibility is lacking. There is only 1 HDMI (again, ugh), and there is no DVI or D-Sub. I couldn't find my Component dongle for my ATI card, so I hooked up via S-Video. Very not pretty, and it failed to detect the signal (1024x768/60) at all after a restart. I'm hopeful that the component dongle will alleviate some of this, but I'm doubtful.

Viewing angle is a little less than I would like. It doesn't get "purply," but it does get "bright" and lose color remarkably quickly off-axis (maybe 30 degrees). Its watchable for many degrees off-axis, but it clearly doesn't have as much "punch" as on-axis. Couple that with a very big, heavy base that doesn't swivel, and it can be kind of annoying to view from anywhere but head-on.

Also, all of the published specs are inaccurate as to its size. The speakers (which contain the Ambilights) are fixed and can't be removed. With them, the TV is 44" wide, not 39" as published everywhere.

Overall, this is an excellent set, if you don't mind the inconvenience. If all you care about is picture, then I'm not sure it can be beat in the 37" - 40" 720p ranges (1080p set--like JVC--excluded).

Rev
post #11 of 34
I was looking on the Philips support site which had the manual and specs sheet for the 37" and it showed a link to a rebate site. I wonder where or when we might be able to a rebate on this set? So close to buying one...
post #12 of 34
I've seen some pics of this Philips model at the BB website and I would like to see it in person. I have to admit that even the older Philips LCD models had truly bright PQ, but I was never too fond of the silver framing. These new ones are black which is always a plus.

But why so many S-Video and Composite inputs? Granted on my old JVC CRT, I had my VCR and DVD player hooked into 2 S-Video inputs and interchangably switched my Gamecube and PS2 between the third, with the cable box just directly plugged into the television, but I'd rather be able to hook up some of that stuff through HDMI or component. Why is connectivity so arbitrary on all these flat panel monitors? Some have more component and composite inputs (3 for example like on many Sonys) while others have fewer and maybe one more HDMI input instead (like the Samsung).

Unless I'm truly blown away by this Philips, I seriously doubt it will disuade me from purchasing the Samsung LN-S4692D simply because Samsung's PQ is one of the best I've ever seen, though Philips is also very good. I just don't like Philips customer support and I do not like their DVD players/recorders either. Had a rather bad experience with one of their recorders. Not to mention this is a 42 incher and is not much less than the Samsung 4692. But I'll give it a try. I'll see how it looks in the store.
post #13 of 34
Revolutionary, I just picked up this set from best buy and was wondering about all the settings on it. I don't have a dvd player hooked up to the tv so I can't real calibrate it myself, all I am getting is analog cable and 4 hd channels. Can you tell me some of your settings, so I can get an idea of what this set is capable of. I'm kinda lost on what to set them on. It seems like a nice set, but I'm not sure I will definetly keep it, yet. It really bugs me that I can't get the colors,tint,brightness, etc correct and all these other settings that I never even heard of before. The problem is yeah it is sharp and bright and fairly clear on hd, but it doesn't look that realistic. Any help would be apprecitated. Thanks, Andre
post #14 of 34
bump
post #15 of 34
Has anyone bought one yet? I am leaning towards keeping mine. Anyone have some settings I can try on it? Also what is the best way to hook up an imac to it? HDMI? or pc input or what? Thanks, Andre
post #16 of 34
Thread Starter 
Sorry, been away from the forum for a while...

I tend to run about:

Contrast: 81
Brightness: 43
Color: 63
Sharpness: 0
Tint: 2
All processing to MAX and ON

Rev
post #17 of 34
So is the width 41 or 44"? I have a restriction of about 41.5" on my mantle and the Philips was a big consideration unless size is an issue.
post #18 of 34
Thread Starter 
Most definitely 44". Its really kind of absurd.
post #19 of 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Revolutionary View Post

Most definitely 44". Its really kind of absurd.

That sucks - I wanted that TV.
post #20 of 34
Anyone know if this set has a cablecard slot?
post #21 of 34
Yeah, I know this is a new post to an old thread....

Just bought one of these last night... best buy had 'em [EDIT].

So far, so good. Don't have HD cable, but I do have some HD stuff on the computer that I have hooked up to the TV via Svideo (sue me, I'm getting my dvi/hdmi cable today) and it will be interesting to see if I can get it to run at it's optimal resolution.

Anyone else purchase this tv since this thread got stale?
post #22 of 34
I got one today...my dad actually. So far so good. I don't have HDTV cable and probably won't get the box but it's replacing something that totally died. I will say though the AV's are a breeze to go from one input to the other...I'm running av's from the cable box to the tv..in scanning all that was found was just channel 3 (input anyway) I might rescan since I upgraded the software...

Just need to also find out the audio settings because it seems each channel seems to have a mind of it's own...
post #23 of 34
Seems like a nice set. Was wondering if anyone else out there has any experience with this pannel that they can add?
post #24 of 34
I've had this tv since November and I am very pleased with my purchase. The pq is just excellent. I have several devices hooked up to this tv. DirecTV....a Panny S52k upconverting dvd player...Xbox360...and PS3. They all play great pq. I enjoy watching all the HD channels on DirecTV. Discovery HD is the best!!! With my dvd player...I can extend the life of my standard dvd collection for the next couple years. As for the game consoles....WOW!!! That's all I have to say for that! Oh...playing blu-ray movies is really nice too! Since the tv is native 720p, I can't get the full hd experience but I can still see a nice difference with blu-ray. Not a huge difference but noticeable. The Ambilight feature is wonderful! Some people say that its only a gimmick. IMO, it truly does help you to reduce eyestrain in dark rooms. It really brings you into the movie. I enjoy it a lot.

With all these positive comments with the tv doesn't mean I don't have negative ones. First, I wish there were more HDMI inputs. The tv only comes with one. With all the HD devices out there that sport HDMI, you would think that Philips would consider adding one more...at least. My only solution to this is buying an HDMI switch. Another little pet-peeve is the sound quality of the tv speakers. 8 watts!!!??? I'm better off listening to audio through my shower radio. Haha. Well, at least I have a decent sound system to fix that.

Despite my negative comments, the positive outweigh it by far. Since November, I haven't had a BS issues or any other real issues (knock on wood). This is my first HDTV and I highly recommend this tv to anyone who is considering buying this. I think I've said enough. ***phew***
post #25 of 34
Has anyone else here tried using the the audio in ( for front channel) and an external audio (for rear channel)? I notice when I run my mini-system DVD prog into the set, along with the audio, that the set's speaker audio is delayed. Makes for a funky echo with the rear audio (direct from the mini-system). This is not a real surround system, just the same L/R info. Playing around with the audio enhancements does not change anything. Guess its just an inherent attribute?

I have the latest firmware, but the tuner still 'loses' digital channels once and a while.

Otherwise I do like the set, epecially the ambilight.

Cheers,
~Rob
post #26 of 34
Hi -
Just picked up one of these 37PF9631D sets on ebay last week. Very happy with it so far. Still trying to see what everyone finds as the best settings for this TV in a dark room. Also, I have a cheap upconvert dvd player (my HD-XA1 hd-dvd player in down in the basement) and I'm wondering if anyone has any opinions as to whether 720p or 1080i looks better to them. I realize the source is probably the most important thing but thought I'd ask.

Quote:
Originally Posted by r0d12o View Post

I've had this tv since November and I am very pleased with my purchase. The pq is just excellent. I have several devices hooked up to this tv. DirecTV....a Panny S52k upconverting dvd player...Xbox360...and PS3. They all play great pq. I enjoy watching all the HD channels on DirecTV. Discovery HD is the best!!! With my dvd player...I can extend the life of my standard dvd collection for the next couple years. As for the game consoles....WOW!!! That's all I have to say for that! Oh...playing blu-ray movies is really nice too! Since the tv is native 720p, I can't get the full hd experience but I can still see a nice difference with blu-ray. Not a huge difference but noticeable. The Ambilight feature is wonderful! Some people say that its only a gimmick. IMO, it truly does help you to reduce eyestrain in dark rooms. It really brings you into the movie. I enjoy it a lot.

With all these positive comments with the tv doesn't mean I don't have negative ones. First, I wish there were more HDMI inputs. The tv only comes with one. With all the HD devices out there that sport HDMI, you would think that Philips would consider adding one more...at least. My only solution to this is buying an HDMI switch. Another little pet-peeve is the sound quality of the tv speakers. 8 watts!!!??? I'm better off listening to audio through my shower radio. Haha. Well, at least I have a decent sound system to fix that.

Despite my negative comments, the positive outweigh it by far. Since November, I haven't had a BS issues or any other real issues (knock on wood). This is my first HDTV and I highly recommend this tv to anyone who is considering buying this. I think I've said enough. ***phew***
post #27 of 34
I have had this TV since November and I am wondering the same things. If you check out CNET's review of the set, they say to use a 720p signal whenever possible because they found the 1080i to look blurry. I can't say I have seen and blur, but I have left my STB to 720p just because that is the closest to the Philip's native resolution. I would like to note that I do love this TV and think Cnet did not do a fair review. The seem to find little wrong with it, just some small annoyances, and give it only a 6.6?

As far as the settings. This has bugged me the most. The same Cnet review also has their favorite calibration settings in the tips and tricks section. I have tried my hardest to use them but I find them just to dark. If you could adjust the backlight of the TV then it would be great. Lately, I just leave it on natural. I would love to hear other people's input though.
post #28 of 34
I bought mine about two weeks ago. I will be mounting it on the wall this weekend. The original mount I bought from Monoprice has a wall bracket insufficient to capture the 800mm VESA800 standard mounting pattern so they're sending me a wider replacement wall bracket for FREE! Good people. ANyways, love the ambilight. Just upgraded to the latest firmware which I believe fixed the crackling speaker problem a bit (lousy speaker quality / sound quality from the factory). Anyone try the THX optimizer on a dvd to set the PQ of the TV? I have mine running at 1080i rez with a cheap RCA upconvert dvd player. I think it looks real good. Can't tell much difference though from 720p to 1080i. Anyone know how long these are supposed to last for the LCD bulb AND ambilight bulbs....is it like 60000 hour halflife like plasma's? This is my first LCD, other one is a Panny 50" plasma.
post #29 of 34
I recently bought the 32PF7421D/37. Does anyone have any suggested settings for this set for a fairly dimly lit room?
post #30 of 34
I bought this TV over a year ago. One of the reasons I bought it was for PIP (picture-in-picture) but came to find out that it really didn't have it (as advertised). Does anyone know if they did some sort of firmware upgrade or any other sort of solution to fix this? Or am I SOL? Thanks!
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